Poets take center stage

By Betsy Levinson betsy@theconcordbridge.org
February 23, 2023

The spring poetry program at the Concord Library includes readings on March 5, April 2 and May 7. Curated by Elizabeth Glenn Mitchell, each program features two noted poets who will read in the Goodwin Forum of the main branch, 129 Main St.

Mikko Harvey and Nina MacLaughlin lead off the spring events, followed by Anna VQ Ross and Jason Tandon in April, and in May, the program winds up with readings by Jordan Escobar and Adam Scheffler..

Harvey lives in Western Mass. He is the author of Let the World Have You and Unstable Neighbourhood Rabbit. He is a Vassar College and Ohio State University graduate.

MacLaughlin’s memoir, Hammer Head: The Making of a Carpenter received accolades, along with her book Wake, Siren: Ovid Resung, and Summer Solstice: An Essay. She is a former editor at the Boston Phoenix and has been published in Boston Magazine, Cosmopolitan and the Boston Globe among others.

MacLaughlin knew “for sure” she wanted to be a writer in third grade. But poetry speaks to her.

“It freshens my perspective,” she said. “It jostles my thoughts, gets me out of ease and complacency.”

In April, Anna VQ Ross and Jason Tandon take their turns at the podium.

Ross said she wrote poems from a young age, reciting The Lake Isle of Innisfree by W. B. Yeats for her school’s poetry day in fourth grade. Her new book, Flutter, Kick “draws very much from my experience of motherhood and how this made me rethink my own childhood and daughterhood through watching my own daughter and son and also made me reconsider my mother’s experience as a young mother and immigrant,” said Ross. She has lived in Dorchester for 18 years.

Tandon began writing poetry at Middlebury College in classes “taught by professors who had an intense love and appreciation for the art.” He draws inspiration from Robert Bly, Mark Strand, Jane Kenyon and James Wright. He focuses on Zen Buddhism and classical Chinese and Japanese poetry.

“I have lived my entire life in New England and I continue to read and feel a connection to Frost, Dickinson, Thoreau and Emerson,” he said. “I think my poems reflect those connections.”

All programs start at 2 p.m.. Register for a seat at concordlibrary.org/news-events/events-calendar.